What are the major tree species that can be found in Colorado?

Colorado is a beautiful state filled with lush greenery, forests, incredible national parks, and other fascinating natural wonders. One of the most common natural beauties you see in this great state are abundant trees. Between spruces, pines, and firs, there are so many great species of trees that can be found in Colorado. Below, we identify some of the major tree species that you will likely see on your next adventure around the state!


Blue Spruce

The Blue Spruce is a coniferous species that grows along mountainous streams, or in narrow bottom lands where the ground is moist. The bark on this species is a gray-brown, and it sprouts amazing evergreen needles that are blue or green in color. These monstrous beauties can grow 70 to 115 feet high and bear shiny brown cones that are 2-4 inches in length.



The Douglas-Fir is another coniferous species that grows in the rocky soils of northern mountain slopes and in mixed conifer forests. The bark on young trees is gray and smooth, while more mature trees boast very thick, red-brown bark. The evergreen needles on this species are about one inch long and a beautiful, deep green. Douglas-Firs stand at an amazing 100 to 130 feet high. The cones are about 1-3 inches in length and hold a plump, round shape.


Plains Cottonwood

The Plains Cottonwood is a deciduous species that grows in flood plains, along streams, in wetter woodlands, and amongst willows. Young trees have a green-yellow bark, while older and more mature trees have bark that’s darker in color and extremely thick. The leaves on this species are broad in shape – about 3-6 inches in length and width – glossy in texture, and are a bright, yellow-green color. This species grows 36 to 190 feet tall and produces inch long capsules that contain many cotton-like seeds within them.


Ponderosa Pine

The Ponderosa Pine is a beautiful coniferous species that can be found in dry, open park-like areas with nutrient poor soils. The bark is thick and red-orange in color, and the evergreen needles are long (3-7 inches) and a dark, yellow-green color. These pines grow to 40 to 160 feet high and produce light red-brown pine cones.


Quaking Aspen

The Quacking Aspen is a deciduous species that is found in many regions across the state, especially where soil is sandy and well-draining. The bark on this species is light green or white and smooth with dark patches along the trunk. The leaves on these aspens are bright green and are about 1-3 inches wide, and this tree produces catkins that reach four inches long. Overall, the tree grows to reach 35 to 50 feet in height.


While many of these amazing Colorado tree species are typically found in the wild, mountainous regions of the state, many can also be grown in residential areas. If you’re looking for options of tree species to plant on your property, we’d love to help you discuss the possibilities! Call us today and let us help you “spruce” up your yard!